A musical interlude



Our friend Guy was in town this weekend, having flown over from San Francisco, stopping to retrieve an acquaintance from Hong Kong before flying over to us. We met him last night at a Ukulele Girls gig in the Esplanade Theatre. There are multiple places to see live music there; there’s an open air stage by the water (with a Singaporean reggae band last night), there’s the concert hall, and there’s a space in the upper concourse where every day there’s something free. That evening it was the Ukulele Girls, launching their album, a set of cheery songs that Felicity appeared very taken with.

I don’t know if it’s just George Formby’s influence, but it’s hard to imagine a downbeat ukulele song. We stayed for two sets, then took Felicity home, as it was well past her bedtime. Miraculously, she slept soundly for a good seven hours before her first reveille.

Today, my calves were terrible. I knew after yesterday’s run that I’d probably suffer, but I hadn’t realized the sort of stabbing pains I’d get with every step. My quadriceps are absolutely fine, and I’d have thought they’d take a pounding on the descents, but apparently not: it’s all about the calves. I hope tomorrow they’re better.

In the morning I took Felicity for a walk while her mother went to a Zumba class, and she was very cooperative, sleeping for a whole hour. Even when I took an ill-advised route past some noisy roadworks, she just shook her head a few times and stayed asleep. I went to get breakfast, I went to the supermarket and I went back home, with nary a complaint from the little one.

The flat is a bit of state; toys strewn everywhere, a sink full of dishes, laundry hanging up everywhere, so we made an effort to tidy things up before going back out to see Guy again. After months of construction work, the Chinatown Food Street is finally complete, with a roof to protect against the sun and plenty of food stalls. We ate there, then slipped over to Ann Siang Hill and persuaded Guy to play the guitar. It turns out Felicity is captivated whenever somebody plays Stairway To Heaven to her, as the photograph demonstrates. I now want to get a ukulele for her, as it’s the sort of instrument that will be too big for less time than most others. Apart from kazoos and mouth organs, of course.

(How would Bob Dylan’s career have gone, if he’d played a kazoo on Hard Rain instead of a harmonica? I guess we’ll never know…)

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